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Counseling Newsletter

Counseling Newsletter November  / December 
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College Information Night for LHS/WPHS Juniors

On December 7th at 7pm in the LHS auditorium, the School Counseling Department will host an informational night to discuss the college admissions process.  The intent of this presentation is to demystify the college admissions process and help students and parents prioritize needs and next steps.  This is an evening that can benefit students and parents of all grade levels, and one that juniors and parents should absolutely attend.  This is an important piece for parents, in particular, to hear prior to junior/parent conferences that will begin in January.  Lastly, the panel presentation will include college admissions representatives from Binghamton University (SUNY), University of Rochester, and Westchester Community College. 

Application Notes for Seniors

For all applications, it is essential that students indicate on their transcript request form whether or not they have applied through the Common App, how they are applying (ED, EA, Rolling) and the correct deadline dates.  This will ensure the proper electronic routing of student transcripts. Seniors can also track applications through their Naviance accounts via the “College I’m Applying To” link and see whether application materials have been submitted and received.

Senior College Deadlines Approach

November 30th is an important date for seniors with a January 1st college application deadline to submit requests for transcripts and letters of recommendation. Students must provide counselors and teachers with at least fifteen (15) working days to submit school information.  It is truly in the student’s best interest to give counselors and teachers writing their letters as much time as possible, so that they can craft a strong letter. In the event that a student makes a last minute decision to apply, in most cases the student may submit the application, and have supplemental materials follow after the deadline. It is the student’s responsibility to confirm this with the college and to let your counselor know that you applied!

Sophomores/Juniors Planning and PSAT Testing Update

In early fall, counselors shared information about the PSAT with the 10th and 11th grade students.  The PSAT was administered on October 15th at both LHS and WPHS.  Between December and January counselors will be visiting the Junior classrooms to discuss post high school options specifically the four-year college process.  Also, they will cover the upcoming standardized testing as well as exposing them to Naviance and the college search. Counselors will also address transitional plans for students considering going directly into the workforce or the military. 
The PSAT scores will be provided to students online, early December, via an access code delivered to the student’s email account.  A notification will be sent when these are available.  If students did not provide an email address on their answer sheet on test day, they can still access their scores online by going to to set up a free account to view their scores.   Codes will also be available in the School Counseling Office.  The PSAT should provide a context for what work needs to be done in order to prepare for the SAT or ACT, as well as a base score range to use in considering potential colleges.

9th Graders Met with Counselors

In October, school counselors met with 9th grade classes to explain their role in each student’s high school experience and how they can best be utilized as a positive resource over the course of the next four years. Counselors spoke to students regarding school involvement, career and personal interests and graduation requirements.  Counselors are typically a first point of contact with both students and parents on school-related matters.
Mental Health and Wellness Program Scheduled

During November/December, Lakeland and Walter Panas school counselors, social workers and school psychologists will be collaborating to promote mental health awareness and wellness.  Additional information about the presentation will be shared in a separate email communication to families.  Please contact your child’s counselor if you would like to discuss these topics further. 

Naviance Student 

Naviance Student is a mobile-responsive site that employs intuitive tools that personalize and simplify the college and career planning process and is accessible on a tablet and smartphone.  This is a program that every student and parent will utilize. Counselors will be working with students to navigate the features of Naviance.  Should you require assistance with this, please contact the school counseling department.  The link can be found on the district’s school counseling website at→ Departments→ School Counseling →Post Secondary Planning-College → Naviance Student.

Students with Testing Accommodations

Students with existing testing accommodations must submit an application to receive such accommodations on any standardized testing (PSAT, SAT, ACT or AP exams.)  Please contact your counselor to apply.  Completing these forms does not guarantee that you will receive accommodations, but allows the College Board and/or ACT to review whether you are eligible. The College Board application only needs to be completed once during your high school career and the ACT application needs to be filled out for each test.  Special Education testing must be current (within the past five years for the SAT, and three years for the ACT.)


Note: These are College Board deadlines
January 20, 2023 for the March 11th SAT
January 18, 2023 for May AP exams
March 17, 2023 for the May 6th SAT
April 14, 2023 for the June 3rd SAT

ACT Refer to late registration deadlines.

First Quarter Coming to a Close

November 4th is the end of the first quarter.  At this point it is important for all students to review progress and determine what is necessary for continued success or improvement.  Setting goals, keeping organized and prioritizing are just a few of the important keys to academic success.  For more information on how you can better tap into your abilities, consult with your teachers and counselor.

Good Luck to Our Senior Early Applicants!

We wish all our seniors who applied through Early Action or Early Decision plans the best of luck.  Decision notifications from these applications will generally arrive home around mid-December.   Be sure to let your counselor know the results of all of your admissions decisions!



  • 11/3: SAT registration deadline for 12/3 test date
  • 11/4: End of first quarter marking period
  • 11/4: ACT registration deadline for 12/10 test date
  • 11/5: SAT test date (offered in district)
  • Nov/Dec: Mental Health and Wellness Presentations
  • 11/15: Report cards available in Home Access Center
  • 11/22: Last day to drop full year courses without notation
  • 11/22: Last day for down level course change
  • 11/30: Deadline for senior college transcript requests for January 1st college application                                                                                                                                    deadlines (schools are closed December 26-January 2)
  • 12/1:Lakeland Labor Careers Council Skilled Trades Presentation, 7pm @ WPHS library
  • 12/3: SAT (not offered in-district)
  • 12/7: College Night for Juniors, 7pm @ LHS auditorium
  • 12/10: ACT Test (not offered in-district)
  • 12/15: 2Q Interim Report Open in Home Access
  • 12/23: Last day to drop a full-year course with drop notation

WALTER PANAS HIGH SCHOOL, 300 Croton Avenue, Cortlandt Manor, NY  10567
PH:  (914) 739-2823 (press 3, Guidance), FAX: (914) 739-3545
ADMINISTRATION:  Joseph Spero, Principal, Samantha Sherwood, Asst. Principal, Christian Clarke, Asst. Principal
COUNSELING OFFICE:  Nadia Potter, District Director of Guidance and Counseling
SCHOOL COUNSELORS:  Chelsea Aversano, Dale Chappelle, Laurainne Mosca, Sonia Recuppio, Brandon Thomas
SUPPORT STAFF:  Mary Ellen Brown, Kathy Giordano, Carole Henkin, Kathy Zadra, College and Career Ctr.